McLaren launched their 2012 Formula 1 World Championship charger at their Technology Centre this morning.
Former champions Jenson Button and Lewis Hamilton remain behind the wheel, as the Woking based squad hope to usurp Red Bull from the top of the Drivers’ and Constructors’ standings.
The MP4-27 is reportedly a major revision from previous editions of the MP4 series, with massive redesigns to the rear bodywork and cooling systems. Due to the implementation of new FIA regulations governing exhaust placement, McLaren’s U-shaped sidepods have also had something of a facelift.
2012 also sees former-Williams Technical Director Sam Michael, officially join the team as Sporting Director – an addition that coincides with a shuffling of the squad’s trackside personnel.
McLaren’s technical department, led by Tim Goss, Paddy Lowe and Neil Oatley, is largely unchanged.
The MP4-27 is set for a private shakedown, before moving onto Jerez for the opening test session of the season, which commences next Tuesday (February 7th).
While I agreed with a number of commentators that the MP4-27 is certainly nice to look at, it will all be sadly irrelevant should it not be a Grand Prix winner.
McLaren appeared (from afar) to be in confident mood today, despite some ill-advised comments to Autosport from a team member, in reference to the skill of one their opponents.
In the following brew-ha-ha, a tea cup was introduced to a storm and the two merrily danced throughout the morning.